Same-sex couples who were legally married after a federal court decision last December will be honored guests in this year’s Utah Pride Festival Parade, and a group of Mormons who’ve been part of the festival for the past two years will be back as well.
The three couples who are plaintiffs in the Kitchen v. Herbert court case will be the grand marshals in this year’s parade, set for Sunday, June 8th at 10:00 a.m. All legally married same-sex couples are invited to march or ride on a float decorated as a wedding hall.
For the third year, Mormons Building Bridges also plans to have a large group on hand. Last year, about four hundred people marched behind their banner, making the group the parade’s single largest entry.
Erika Munson, one of the group’s founders, says they’re faithful Latter-day Saints who want to demonstrate love and inclusion toward gay, lesbian, bisexual and transgender Mormons and others. Though the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints continues to oppose same-sex marriage. Munson says Mormons Building Bridges has tried to step back from the marriage debate.
“We need to understand what the experience is for gay couples who have been waiting and waiting for the opportunity to be legally married and now are," Munson tells KUER. "And we need to explain ourselves and explain the Mormon experience better to the L-G-B-T community.”
Munson says Mormons Building Bridges will participate in the Trans Rally and March on Saturday for the first time. And they’ll have a booth inside the festival at the Salt Lake City-County building downtown.